Medical Humanities (formerly known as Medicine, Literature and Society) has officially been approved as a new Columbia undergraduate major.
November 18, 2020
Medical Humanities is an emerging field that engages with humanities, social sciences, and scientific disciplines to emphasize the vulnerability of human bodies, the heterogeneity of anti-essentialist approaches to biology, and the structural determinants of health. The historicizing stance and the critical reasoning of the humanities and social sciences are necessary to understand and emphasize the role of ideologies and cultural assumptions in the production of medical knowledge. The pandemic has reinforced the importance of thinking about the biological concurrently through the lenses of the political, the social and the aesthetic. As we imagine new ways of mourning and reckoning with racial and class health disparities, we can turn to inter-disciplinary approaches being developed by the medical humanities.